Clean Run - November 2017 - 49

fully trained other dogs, yet the related
dogs developed the same symptoms. It
is just not statistically possible for this
many dogs of a particular breeding to
be affected by ETOs without some genetic component being involved.
Building awareness can help breeders
like me to do the best we can to avoid

breeding individuals who are affected
or related to several affected dogs. But
I also want to help build awareness of
the problem to help owners understand
not to correct their dogs for jumping
mistakes when the dogs are doing the
very best they can. A dog with ETOs is
not the same as a dog that values speed
over clean jumping; a good jumping pro-

gram can fix that kind of problem, but it
can't fix ETOs.
There are still so many unknowns, and
I don't profess to have all the answers.
I'm just a person who loves agility and
loves working with my dogs and who
happens to have been personally affected by ETOs. D

Jean's Observations on ETOs in Related Dogs
One day I was watching Seven's littermate run agility and noticed she was also having ETOs. This dog had a much different
temperament than Seven, and was trained by a different handler; we had never trained our dogs together. Both of us had
successfully trained previous dogs to be skillful jumpers, yet our littermates had a similar jumping problem.
Because Seven started so brilliantly in her agility training, I made some breeding decisions before I realized what was happening with her jumping. I bred Seven's sister Snowy to the brother of one of my favorite dogs in the world, Taz, who
I had a lot of success with in agility. It never occurred to me that ETOs could be a problem that had a genetic component.
Like many others at that time, I thought ETOs were a training issue.
The first litter from that breeding was born in June 2006. Spec was the puppy I kept. Those pups were turning out to have
wonderful temperaments and showing great promise in training, so I decided to repeat the breeding. I kept Cheer from
the second litter. Out of eight puppies from those two litters, seven dogs had some degree of ETOs. The sire of this litter
was a talented jumper from a family of talented jumpers. To my knowledge, he never produced a jumping problem when
bred to bitches other than Snowy, Seven's sister.
Obviously I would not have gone this direction in my breeding program had I known what I know now. I would have just
loved Seven for who she was rather than trying to incorporate her genetics into my program. The puppies from the first
litter were starting to demonstrate jumping problems at 18 months of age when the second litter was just a few weeks
old. I decided to keep Cheer anyway, knowing the possible risk but hoping I was wrong.
I have spayed Seven's sister Snowy as well as Spec and Cheer. Even though Cheer turned out to be such a nice dog,
I chose to spay her anyway. It was probably the most difficult decision I've made in my entire time as a breeder, and it
brought me to tears. If I could have bred just for me, I might have taken a chance on breeding Cheer since she showed
no signs of ETOs. But I live with guilt over the puppies in other homes who were purchased for agility and have jumping
problems because of the decisions I made. Since we don't understand the genetics of ETOs yet, I can't say
I will never produce a dog with ETOs again. However, I will do my very best to avoid it. As it turned out, spaying Cheer
was a good decision; she developed signs of ETOs at 4 years of age.
I know another relative with ETOs that always jumps 6 to 12 inches from the jump standard on his right side. He always
moves to that side of the jump, even if it's not logical. He swerves to make it happen. I think when he is in that position on
the jump, he knows where to take off from. This coping mechanism causes him to be slow, but he almost always succeeds
in clearing the jumps.
I have noticed that all of the dogs with ETOs from this pedigree have a consistent habit. When they stutter step and head
duck for a jump they lack confidence in, they also lift their right rear leg in an abnormal fashion; sort of a "skip" with that
leg. We have investigated possible rear limb issues in these dogs, but nothing physical was found. While it is not something
common to all dogs with ETOs, it does seem to be just another way these particular dogs were exhibiting ETOs. One of
relatives had an orthopedist ready to do surgery for a luxating patella. I am a vet and could not make her patella luxate, so
I got a couple more opinions from doctors who agreed with me that her knee was fine. She was only doing it when measuring her jumps, and was 100% sound in all other areas of life.
Videos showing the progression of ETO symptoms in my dogs are available at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzg
yQuKlBqWVJN4nTuvrNsBf8_TzESRwV. If you subscribe to the printed magazine, the easiest way to view the videos is to
go to the Clean Run magazine YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/CleanRunMagazine and select the
playlist called "November 2017 Clean Run - Related Dogs with ETOs."

Jean Lavalley is a small animal veterinarian who practices in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. She has been doing agility as an intense hobby since 1995. She has a passion
for agility with her Shelties, which has taken her on many adventures in the past 20 years. She has represented the USA in multiple international events with three of
her dogs: Taz, Cheer, and Sprint.
November 17 | Clean Run

49


https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzgyQuKlBqWVJN4nTuvrNsBf8_TzESRwV https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzgyQuKlBqWVJN4nTuvrNsBf8_TzESRwV https://www.youtube.com/user/CleanRunMagazine

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clean Run - November 2017

Contents
Clean Run - November 2017 - Cover1
Clean Run - November 2017 - Cover2
Clean Run - November 2017 - Contents
Clean Run - November 2017 - 4
Clean Run - November 2017 - 5
Clean Run - November 2017 - 6
Clean Run - November 2017 - 7
Clean Run - November 2017 - 8
Clean Run - November 2017 - 9
Clean Run - November 2017 - 10
Clean Run - November 2017 - 11
Clean Run - November 2017 - 12
Clean Run - November 2017 - 13
Clean Run - November 2017 - 14
Clean Run - November 2017 - 15
Clean Run - November 2017 - 16
Clean Run - November 2017 - 17
Clean Run - November 2017 - 18
Clean Run - November 2017 - 19
Clean Run - November 2017 - 20
Clean Run - November 2017 - 21
Clean Run - November 2017 - 22
Clean Run - November 2017 - 23
Clean Run - November 2017 - 24
Clean Run - November 2017 - 25
Clean Run - November 2017 - 26
Clean Run - November 2017 - 27
Clean Run - November 2017 - 28
Clean Run - November 2017 - 29
Clean Run - November 2017 - 30
Clean Run - November 2017 - 31
Clean Run - November 2017 - 32
Clean Run - November 2017 - 33
Clean Run - November 2017 - 34
Clean Run - November 2017 - 35
Clean Run - November 2017 - 36
Clean Run - November 2017 - 37
Clean Run - November 2017 - 38
Clean Run - November 2017 - 39
Clean Run - November 2017 - 40
Clean Run - November 2017 - 41
Clean Run - November 2017 - 42
Clean Run - November 2017 - 43
Clean Run - November 2017 - 44
Clean Run - November 2017 - 45
Clean Run - November 2017 - 46
Clean Run - November 2017 - 47
Clean Run - November 2017 - 48
Clean Run - November 2017 - 49
Clean Run - November 2017 - 50
Clean Run - November 2017 - 51
Clean Run - November 2017 - 52
Clean Run - November 2017 - 53
Clean Run - November 2017 - 54
Clean Run - November 2017 - 55
Clean Run - November 2017 - 56
Clean Run - November 2017 - 57
Clean Run - November 2017 - 58
Clean Run - November 2017 - 59
Clean Run - November 2017 - 60
Clean Run - November 2017 - 61
Clean Run - November 2017 - 62
Clean Run - November 2017 - 63
Clean Run - November 2017 - 64
Clean Run - November 2017 - 65
Clean Run - November 2017 - 66
Clean Run - November 2017 - Cover3
Clean Run - November 2017 - Cover4
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